Sally Trent has an illegitimate child, but cannot support her and gives the baby up for adoption. The father, Michael Gardner, leaves for China not knowing about the baby, and she assumes he has abandoned her for life. She gets a job as a torch singer, changes her name to Mimi Benton, and becomes notorious for her drinking and philadering. Mimi fills in on a children's radio program as the character "Aunt Jenny," singing and telling bedtime stories, and eventually uses the airtime to find her long lost daughter, part with her wild lifestyle, and reunite with Michael. Written by
One of over 700 Paramount Productions, filmed between 1929 and 1949, which were sold to MCA/Universal in 1958 for television distribution, and have been owned and controlled by Universal ever since. See more »
A woman must suffer much before she can sing a little.
Come back to me in about a year.
All right. In the meantime watch me suffer.
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This is a touching if not extraordinary film about a woman who has a child out of wedlock, gives it up for adoption and suffers a great deal despite achieving wealth, glamour and fame first as a nightclub torch singer and then as a children's radio personality. This may have been Claudette Colbert's first great cinematic tour de force, gorgeously photographed by Karl Struss (through whose lens she also appeared to huge advantage in Sign of the Cross and Four Frightened People), sheathed in a variety of Travis Banton gowns and singing rather ludicrous songs by Ralph Rainger and Leo Robin in her own voice and let's give her a nod for that! The role is as juicy as can be, giving her the opportunity to essay mother love, humiliation, anger, despair, bitterness, drunkenness, nobility, eroticism - you name it. What a showcase! The screen bursts with life when she is at its center. The other performers, including an underused Lyda Roberti as a fellow unwed mother and a stiff David Manners as the father of the child, serve as window dressing. The only standout aside from Colbert is Ethel Griffies as Manners's stodgy, coldhearted aunt; acting like hers, in the grand old fashion, died decades ago but not until talkies captured the work of some of its practitioners, and it is still a treat to watch.
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